pillow lab @ princeton

neural coding & computation group

Principal Investigator

Jonathan Pillow
Jonathan is an associate professor in the Princeton Neuroscience Institute (PNI) and Department of Psychology, with an affiliation to the Center for Statistics & Machine Learning. He received a Ph.D. in neural science from NYU (supervised by Eero Simoncelli), and was a postdoc at the Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit at UCL. Jonathan was an assistant professor at UT Austin before moving to Princeton in Fall 2014.


Mikio Aio
Mikio has a Ph.D. in biomathematics from North Carolina State University, and joined the lab in February 2015. His current research focuses on scalable methods for receptive field estimation, dimensionality reduction methods for neural data, Bayesian optimization, Gaussian processes, and point process models for multivariate time series.
Adam Charles
Adam has a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at Georgia Tech, and joined the lab in June 2015. Adam's main research interests are in statistical signal processing, stochastic filtering, high-dimensional probability and theoretical neuroscience. In particular, Adam is interested in how mathematical modeling can benefit both emerging imaging modalities across scientific disciplines as well as scientific theories on the behavior of biological neural systems.
Brian DePasquale
Brian recently finished his Ph.D. in Neurobiology and Behavior at Columbia University with Larry Abbott. His work focused on the dynamics of recurrent spiking and continuous variable neural networks and the development of methods for training these networks to perform tasks and to replicate experimental data. His current work focuses on latent variable models of behavior and neural activity during evidence accumulation (jointly advised by Carlos Brody). General areas of interests in theoretical neuroscience include the role of random and learned connections in neural circuit function and sources of variability in network dynamics and its relationship to behavior.
Stephen Keeley
Stephen recently completed his Ph.D. at the Center for Neural Science at NYU under John Rinzel and Andre Fenton. His work involved using firing rate models to study competitive gamma oscillations in CA1 and the roles interneuron subtypes play in impacting gamma dynamics. Broadly, Stephen is interested in the dynamics of neuronal circuitry at different timescales, and how network-dictated dynamics and activity-dependent circuit changes interact to shape learning, memory and behavior.


Nicholas Roy
Nick is a second-year Ph.D. student in PNI, with a B.S. in mathematics and computer science from Yale, where he studied population coding for working memory in the lab of Xiao-Jing Wang and under the supervision of John Murray. His research interests include adaptive optimal models of behavior and learning as well as functional connectivity estimation in C. elegans.
Anqi Wu
Anqi is a second-year Ph.D. student in PNI, with a B.S. in electrical engineering and an M.S. in computer science. She is currently working on statistical models of neural responses, high-dimensional regression methods for fMRI decoding, and Bayesian optimization. Her research interests include latent variable models, active learning, and Bayesian methods in machine learning and statistics.

Research Associates

David Zoltowski
David has a B.S. in electrical engineering from Michigan State University and is finishing an M.Phil. degree in Engineering from the University of Cambridge, where he worked with Máté Lengyel on perceptual decision-making. His research interests include statistical models of neural population and behavioral data and perceptual decision-making.

Undergraduate researchers

Camille Rullan Buxo (Physics, 2017)
Camille is a senior in the Physics department interested in using principles from physics to study neural encoding. She is currently working on a thesis project that focuses on efficient and biologically accurate models of coding in spiking neural networks.
Ted Moskovitz (Neuroscience, 2017)
Ted is a senior majoring in Neuroscience. His research focuses on the modeling of neural responses using deep learning techniques. He is especially interested in the training of machine learning algorithms on small datasets, as well as computational linguistics.


  • Mijung Park (Ph.D. in ECE, 2013). Now postdoc at U. Amsterdam.
  • Evan Archer (Ph.D. in applied math 2014). Now postdoc at Columbia University.
  • Karin Knudson (Ph.D. in mathematics, 2014; co-advised by Rachel Ward). Now mathematics instructor at Phillips Academy.
  • Kenneth Latimer (Ph.D. in neuroscience, 2015). Now postdoc at U. Washington.
  • Jacob Yates (Ph.D. in Neuroscience, 2016; co-advised by Alex Huk). Now postdoc at U. Rochester.
  • Ji Hyun Bak (Ph.D. in Physics, 2016; co-advised by Bill Bialek). Now postdoc at Korea Institute for Advanced Study (KIAS).

  • Lea Duncker (RA, 2015-2016). Now Ph.D. student at Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, UCL.
  • Conor McGrory (RA, summer 2016).

  • Il Memming Park (Postdoc, 2010-2014). Now asst. prof. at Stony Brook University.